Law enforcement officers around the globe are becoming increasingly adept at catching child traffickers, child sexual abusers and online pornographers. Artificial intelligence is helping to grow the capture rate exponentially while simultaneously reducing the human toll on law enforcement and data mining staff. In fact, evidence now shows that the psychological damage from viewing online images while vetting child-centered sex trafficking online has an adverse effect on our men and women in blue.
Mass murder, like the attack on Quebec City's Islamic Cultural Centre in 2017 and the ongoing eradication of Iraqi Yazidis by ISIL (the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant), is rarely without precedent. For international watchdogs, as for law enforcement, a forensic path extends backward, through escalating violence and inflammatory language, through news reports and social media, through a myriad of unresolved conflicts that lead, seemingly inexorably in hindsight, to loss of life. The needle points to the haystack, but the haystack tells us little of the needle.
Back in 1989 when Blue Line was first published, technology in law enforcement was a fairly primitive affair, and much of the daily work centred around paper — lots of it. Most patrol officers carried a briefcase filled with numerous five- or six-part reports, which used thin carbon-paper inserts to transfer the hand-written word through to the parts below.
Our digitally connected world has created enormous benefits for our business and personal lives. That being said, the advancements in technology have not been wholly positive. The development of technologies such as encryption, the dark web and cryptocurrencies have created a situation where criminals who are abusing children, trafficking human beings, committing fraud online or enabling terrorism almost have an unlimited right to digital privacy, shielding them from investigation and prosecution through technological means.
In our series of blogs about security in the smart city, we’ve stressed that cities must be safe before they can become smart—and stay safe as they become smarter. Getting policing basics right and building trusted relationships between police and the communities they serve is the vital first step, one that lays the foundation for introducing new technologies that can transform how police services and citizens collaborate to improve public safety.
Exponential technologies, big data, and advanced analytics are revolutionizing policing across Canada and around the world. While they can’t replace the human element and back-to-basics policing, as we wrote about in our previous post, these real, emerging, or aspirational technologies are disrupting traditional policing models for the better.
Every shift entails organization and planning. New predictive software can be a game changer. By collecting data based on everyday occurrences, departments can start each shift with better preparation and decrease the occurrence of tragic incidents. Not only does this type of software help officers to be more proactive while on patrol, it also allows officers to prepare for certain circumstances ahead of time.
Few officers relish the opportunity to complete paperwork and administrative duties. It’s not the most glamorous function of law enforcement, but proper documentation and recording of information is critical to prove the authenticity of evidence and integrity of investigations. By digitizing records, taking some of the “paper” out of paperwork, information becomes more searchable, auditable and reliable, while reducing the administrative burden on officers.
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